Two weeks to go! It seems so recent that I took a home pregnancy test, visited the doctor, and commenced worrying that this pregnancy would end abruptly and too early, like the three before it. But all that was back in May, and now I'm big and healthy and full-term-pregnant with a squirming, bouncing, kicking little miracle. I am so grateful.
...and a little uncomfortable. I admit it! As much as I'm in love with this baby and this pregnancy, I of course suffer from all of the (relatively minor) complaints of the last trimester. We're talking heartburn aka Throatferno, insomnia, pinched nerves in my back, and a bunch of general discomfort when I attempt athletic feats as ambitious as, say standing from a seated position. So in order to distract me and to celebrate our last few weeks as DINKS, Josh and I dropped off the troublemaker at Doggy Day Care, fed the cat, and headed south to Portland this week. Our destination?
See, a while back Josh and I saw this clip of Anthony Bourdain in Portland, OR, visiting a doughnut shop. You can watch the two minutes if you want, but there is really only one thing to take from the video. Voodoo Doughnut makes a maple bacon bar. A risen, glazed bar, dipped in maple glaze and pressed with two thick, crispy slices of bacon.
It had to be mine.
As my relatives back East can attest, doughnuts are a major lifestyle component of living in New England. There's a Dunkin Doughnuts on every corner, where you can get mediocre coffee, terrible espresso, and absolutely transcendent doughnuts! In the Seattle area? Top Pot. I admit I've never actually been there, but look at that list. Plain, plain, plain Jane doughnuts, perfect for delicately consuming with a knife and fork while reading The Economist and lamenting the rain. Hey, Uptight Seattleites! THAT'S NOT WHAT I'M AFTER THESE DAYS.
What is it I'm after? This.
That's four of the five doughnuts we bought immediately upon arriving in Portland. The fifth was a plain glazed, which I bought expressly so I could eat one on the way home and not feel guilty about not photographing it. It was heavenly. There's a maple bacon bar, of course, a Mexican Hot Chocolate (old fashioned, rolled in cinnamon, chocolate, and chili pepper), a raspberry filled, and an Old Dirty Bastard - a raised and glazed plain, topped with crumbled Oreo cookies and drizzled with peanut butter.
My life is complete.
Seriously, these are some of the most delicious treats I've ever had! Which should be doubly apparent by the fact that I haven't yet described what we had to do to get them. UGH. Here's how our drive to Portland looked. Let me say again that I'm 8 1/2 months pregnant, hormonal, and did I mention neither of us is sleeping because in the 20 minutes or so I sleep each night, I snore so badly that Josh has to leave the room? We were kind of at our wits end by the time we arrived. Then our room wasn't ready (which the awesome hotel actually handled really well, more on that in part 2), we walked six blocks in the cold rain only to find a 45 minute, uncovered outdoor line for the doughnut shop. By the time we got inside, we were soaked, freezing, a little irked, and my back was incredibly sore. But the smell of doughnuts took all the pain away.
Josh is still learning the camera.
Since most other vices are strictly prohibited during pregnancy, this trip was all about the food. When we got back to the hotel it was about 6pm, and Josh and I traded bites of the bacon bar and ODB before heading out to find real food for dinner. The rest of our little overnight trip did not disappoint, even though we peaked a little early with the doughnuts.
"Portland" has always been Portland, Maine for me. Lobsters, lighthouses, fine dining everywhere, and local beer jump to mind when I hear that word, as do the childhood memories of The Maine Mall, drives to Boston, and visits to my more metropolitan aunts in the big city. (Yes, I'm still talking about Portland, Maine. Hush.) But after this little overnight, and considering my home address, the original Portland's namesake is carving out its own little place in my heart - a place shaped, of course, like a doughnut.